Race of the Week 2017

HRN Original Blog:
Zipse At The Track

Superhorse ready to be unveiled

A story like this is too big to hold back any longer.
Perhaps ready to eclipse Secretariat as the best known thoroughbred of modern times within a single race, or maybe two, Deep Elem Blues (that is what I will call him, as I promised not to use the true name of this horse until his first career race) is the fastest horse I have ever seen. As a matter of fact, he is the fastest horse anyone has ever seen.
Recent calls from a long-time friend, and veteran trainer, Jill Johnson (also holding back her true identity until the official unveiling of Deep Elem Blues) prompted my recent visit to her farm in Indiana. She told me of a horse so incredible, that I simply needed to see him with my own eyes. Expecting it to be a promising young two-year-old, I was surprised to hear it was instead an unraced five-year-old gelding. Johnson informed me that the horse had been so severely injured in a paddock accident as a yearling in his native Argentina, that vets had said he would never make it to the races. Always up for a challenge, Johnson rescued the horse because she liked the look in his eye. Being a son of a South American superstar, and one of her personal favorites as a sire, did not hurt either.
I was stunned at what I saw. Breaking off at least 40 lengths behind his workmate, Deep Elem Blues took off just before the middle of the backstretch of the half-mile training track. Within his first fifty yards, I began to believe everything the veteran horsewoman had been telling me prior to this amazing morning. Johnson had considered the big bay her pet project for more than three years now, and did not take her eyes off him from the moment he stepped onto the track. I was watching closely too, as he continued to gain quickly on his workmate on the turn.
Leveling off through the stretch the first time around, I was awestruck with the amount of ground this monster gobbled up as his front legs reached out for ever new stride. Rippling muscles were obvious throughout his body, and his long black mane stretched behind his purposeful head as the wind he was creating made him look like something out of a movie. Within a quarter mile, he had passed the horse meant to be a target for him. She won an allowance race at Hoosier Park last fall, Johnson said of the four-year-old filly, without taking an eyeball off of Deep Elem Blues. The filly began to slow to a gallop on the backstretch. But the big, black gelding seemed to be going even faster now from my vantage point across the track. Staying close to the rail, through the tight turn, Deep Elem Blues powered past us one more time.
Five and change is what I thought I heard come quietly from Johnson. “Come again?” I said in utter disbelief. “Six in 1:05 and change,” Johnson said nonchalantly, with only a wrinkly smile giving away her complete pride in the horse that she has worked with for so long. She went on to tell me that she probably could have raced him last fall, but she did not want to rush him, and he is still only getting better.
Okay, I thought, I’ve just seen a horse work a world record time for six furlongs. He did it with little urging, and over a deep, half-mile training track. Seldom one who suffers from a lack of words, I could not seem to find the right ones to respond, as Johnson just stared at me waiting for my reaction. Mouth open, I could only stare back.
Oh my God, would be the best I could come up with as the big bay pranced past us on the way to the break. He wasn’t blowing hard enough to extinguish a candle, and looked unlike anything I had quite seen before. Big like Zenyatta, wild like Dr. Fager, with a presence about him that said he knew was special (sorry, no pictures until, you guessed it, his first race.) Finally, the questions began to flow.
Let’s just say he is ready for the races, and his first race should be at Keeneland in the first week of the meet. Johnson tells me that he will begin in a 1 1/16 maiden special weight, before heading straight to stakes company. She says his races will be spaced out a little, but calls him the most durable horse she has ever seen in nearly 50 years around the horses. The Breeders’ Cup Classic will be his main goal this year, but she wants to take him all over for the biggest races in the world in the next few years. She also told me not to be fooled by the fast six furlongs, “He really only gets going after a couple of miles.”
Suffice it to say, I will be chronicling everything Deep Elem Blues does on this column, as he goes from an unraced maiden to the most special horse the world has ever seen. Get ready for something truly unbelievable, racefans. See you at Keeneland!


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Older Comments about Superhorse ready to be unveiled...

Reminds me of the infamous super horse Fly Lexis Fly that was supposed to destroy all the competition in the USA...that to ended up as an April Fools joke.
yep..too good to be true..April Fools 4 sure..
If this was real, go Indiana! hahaha
Nice try Brian, but I fell for Sidd Finch - I won't fall for this. Happy April Fools Day!
The words silky and invasor kept popping up as I read this. Wrong again!
Downhill training track ;) ?
What if this did actually happen, and all of us, thinking it was just a prank, thought everybody else was lying about the real superhorse
I read this whole thing, thinking you were serious, Brian. Not only until I read the comments did I remember it was April Fools Day. Thanks for reminding me, I might pull a prank on my kids when they come home from school ;).
Nice job. Forgot for a moment what day it was.
April Fools to you too! I was all excited for a second...
Oh how nice it is to imagine such horses!
I wish this was real....
Sounds like Verrazano !!!
Good one, Brian.
How are they going to hide the wings?!
Nice April Fools joke Brian!
April fools day jokes are childish.

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Meet Brian Zipse 

Brian has been a passionate fan of horse racing his entire life. Taken to the races at a very young age, he has been lucky enough to see all the greats in person from Secretariat, Forego, and Ruffian through Rachel Alexandra, Zenyatta, and American Pharoah. Before coming to the Nation, Brian displayed his love for the sport through the development of his horse racing website, which quickly became one of the most popular blogs in the game. 

The Editor of Horse Racing Nation from 2010-2017, Brian authored a daily column as Zipse at the Track, or ZATT for short, and added his editorial flare to the overall content of the website. Now a Senior Writer for HRN, Brian continues to contribute his thoughts on racing, as well as co-hosting the popular racing show, HorseCenter. A big supporter of thoroughbred aftercare, he serves as the President of The Exceller Fund.

Brian's work has also been published on several leading industry sites. He has consulted for leading contest site Derby Wars, is both a Hall of Fame and NTRA poll voter, and is a Vox Populi committee member. 

A horse owner and graduate of DePaul University, Brian lives just outside of Louisville with his wife Candice and daughter Kendra.


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